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Topics - MisterShuffles

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Balloon Chit Chat / Marvel Superhero Balloons and Pricings
« on: September 09, 2016, 04:06:11 PM »
Yesterday, I received an e-mail from someone asking if I could build
ironman, hulk and captain america out of balloons.

But not only that, this person wanted 10 of them, in a mix.. did not
matter which one was 4, and the other two 3..

Anyone have decent design links where I could go to find a good
face for hulk?  I suppose I could just use a green round and some
markers but wanted an idea for some options.

Also I also generally have a devil of a time making a captain america shield where
the colors of the shield stays put and does not spring apart.  I'd prefer to not have
to resort to double sided sticky tape, but I may well need to if I make it.

This is the first time in almost 25 years doing this, that someone requested
that many superhero creations at once, and to be honest I have not a clue
what to charge them to be fair, except that given just one of those would be
the average superhero balloon given to the birthday child, 10 seems a lot.

Opinions are greatly appreciated.  But I'll have to have some sort of answer
for them soon, regardless.


Balloon Chit Chat / Restaurant Work
« on: August 24, 2016, 02:42:01 PM »
While I've been a hobby balloon twister for longer than I care to think about, I would like to branch out and do some steady
restaurant bookings, like 'Kids Nights' or somewhere that is kid friendly in Canada.  (I do not believe we have a Chucky Cheeze)

Any suggestions, guides, tips and what not about how best to prepare for doing this, and how to go about it?  Also, if I'd need
to have any form of liability insurance, before a restaurant would touch me?

Mister Shuffles

Balloon Tutorial & Help / Balloon Recycling: A really Crafty Idea
« on: August 07, 2016, 04:10:17 AM »
Now If there is anything I utterly *KNOW* about twisters, is that we all wind up with
little popped bits all over the place that we often pick up and re-use, as flower centres
or eyeballs, or noses, or whatever of the 1,000,001 ways to use a scrap.

But did you realize that you could make something else useful and clever out of it too
I9 didn't until I ran into a fellow twister at a weekly balloon jam at a local mall, when I was
visiting there in Florida, last year on vacation.  He had a very simple yet effective way
for dealing with the over-abundance of balloon bits.

Scrunchie Bracelets/hair bands.

What he does, and its sooo simple.  I now do it too on occassion and can sometimes
make a great 'craft idea' for to finish up a party after the balloons are done, if there is
still time left and you want them to have something more lasting and memorable.

Take a 160.  Any color.  Doesn't matter.  Then a pair of safety scissors and a big handful
of the colorful of the scraps.

Use the scissors to snip off the round ends if any, and the knots, then trim all the pieces
into lengths, of about call it '3 fingers wide', or 4.  Depending on how much color you wish.
There's no real rules.

Then simply put a pea sized puff of air into the end of the 160 and seal it with a knot.

Take whatever colors of your choice, or you could do alternating patterns, and slip them on
the 160.  Its stiff with air, but un-inflated, sort of like a sewing thread that has gone rigid.

Simply slide your colors on, and bunch them up a bit at the knot.  Not too tight, since you
want a little bit of give.  Pink, red, blue, orange, yellow, green, whatever you like.  Or you
could alternate between two colors, or well, there is so many choices.

Once you have it large enough, since if it goes on wrists you do not want it to cut off
any circulation, simply make sure the last piece on has a nozzle tip that is facing out.

Scrunch it up, tie a good solid granny knot, then for good measure carefully tug the
nozzel knot back over the point where you tied the granny knot.

End result?  Rainbow Bracelet that kids love, and which also if you have enough spare
makes a not bad little attachment for to fasten toy dogs to, for those kids who will
lose it in the breeze.  

Perhaps even alternate it with letter beads spelling out a name or phone number.

Just make sure to use a decent 160.  I have a pack of red balloons someone sold me
last year, that I thought looked good, but they were so old they were no longer able to
hold air properly.  They make do for those bracelets however, since I do not have to
worry about using up good stock.  Though they do tend to break easier.  Might have to
double up on them.

The practice is more common than I thought, having just now looked it up.  They are
known as balloon scrap bracelets.  Not sure if all you lot know of them, but if a few
like I, had not until I was shown, then it should be a decent way to turn all those
hordes of leftovers into either a bit of profit, or as part of a show.

Little 160 already blown at the tip, pre-cut 260q 's in a bucket.. the children select
their colors, string them then you go and tie them.  They get to wear a bracelet that
they did all themselves.  Leaves for more a lasting memory than a balloon on its own
I would think.


Balloon Chit Chat / Possible Latex Alternatives?
« on: August 06, 2016, 03:12:14 PM »
Looking online I've seen a few things about latex alternatives, and even saw one link (which I cant find again) where someone made a toy poodle out of some other form of plant rubber that had so they claimed no latex in it.  Or atleast none of the sort that allergy suffers appear to be prone to.

But in trying to find it again, I came across this.  Which I thought I'd share, though I imagine the time it'd take to set this up would be troublesome.  But if someone more skillful and knowledgeable might have some other input, who knows.. perhaps this might be something that could work out to the benefit of all of us?

In ... ideas.html  I found the following about half way down when it was speaking of latex alternatives, foils, mylar and the like, among other things, then I saw this.

BALLOON TWISTERS: A nice latex free balloon for twisting is available at  Basically, it’s a roll of 3" poly bags.  Cut off desired length, heat seal or tie off on one end and fill with air.  Then heat seal or tie off the other end.  While not perfect, they do work pretty good.

Sounds like it'd be more something we could prep and store depending on how long they keep, and have as latex alternatives when going to any party that we know might have folks who suffer it.  Being able to say that you are able to provide a basic latex alternative, even if say simple as making a non-latex sword might be useful.  Though that would mean all the swords would have to be that way for to be fair.  

Still, the idea seems intriguing.  Opinions?


Balloon Chit Chat / On the Serious Side of Twisting: About Health Issues
« on: August 06, 2016, 12:12:56 PM »
I have been twisting, informally and formally ever since perhaps early 1993 or 1994, and have never once regretted the decision.

However, I am starting to feel some of the effects from having done this for so long as well, and yes, its also just plain aging too.

But is there anything that people can recommend, for being among the older of the twisting community that can suggest steps to
take to aid this?  As much as I love doing balloon twisting, if there are things that should periodically be done that I am not, I would like to know, before I wind up doing something like neurological damage that cant be undone at some point.

The last 2 or so years, I've started to develop tingling in my fingers, whenever I twist too long, or even other things.  Using a computer mouse a certain way, holding items and what not.  I am fairly sure these are signs of carpal tunnel, but I would rather avoid the surgery route if possible.

Some folks I asked locally, suggested the possibility of massage therapy, and accupuncture.

Anyone able to shed light on the merits of that, or any insight at all on how to keep on twisting for a long time to come?  

To be honest, I sort of more fear that I may eventually lose the ability TO twist, over any eventual problems it may give.  Though I would rather find a way to avoid the former and latter if possible.  

Or if it is too late for I to really do too much about it, what of things those who are still more recently come into the twisting lifestyle that can do things now, to avoid what I am looking at, later?

Lets hear your thought please, people.


Welcome / Greetings from Nova Scotia!
« on: August 04, 2016, 04:23:49 PM »
Hi, everyone!

This is something that I should have done many many years ago.  

Having taught myself the fun art of folding air back in the early 90's with nothing but a scratchy snowy video from the children's section of the library, called Balloonacy II by Dennis Weaver(?) or something like that, I've been at it ever since, more so in the Summer than anything.

I've lots of stories to share, lots of ideas to bounce around.  Hopefully, I will be able to add a little more fun to the mix in here, and get some back!

Here's a quick few balloons I have twisted in the past.  Though I admit, having seen what some other artists have done at learning it for a few years, for having been doing so for over 20 I should be far further along than I am.  Though I am once again improving and learning new figures.

Hope to hear from all of you and who knows?  Perhaps meet some of those doing this close enough we could arrange some Balloon Jam, sometime.  Love to meet others as interested as I, with similar or superior skills.

G. Manson
aka Mister Shuffles
(I soo wanted to try and lay claim to the name 'Oliver Twist' but I do believe that one is spoken for already.)

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